MoD ditches plans to boycott ITN embeds

The Ministry of Defence has backed down after it threatened to ban ITN reporters from being embedded with British troops.

The news came a day after ITN editor-in-chief David Mannion (pictured) blasted the MoD on the front page of Press Gazette last week. ITN had been told that its reporters were subject to a ban after a news report criticised the way wounded British troops are treated.

Mannion told Press Gazette: "ITN has been the recipient of a punitive and unjust punishment for a �crime' it did not commit. The MoD press office has behaved like an apparatchik of a one-party state. It is an issue which troubles me deeply and one, I suggest, which should trouble every journalist." Last Friday, ITN released a statement saying: "ITN has been given assurances by the Ministry of Defence that there are no further restrictions on access by ITN journalists to embedded reporting facilities to cover British military operations in Afghanistan and other conflict zones.

"ITN has given reassurances to the MoD that it will always report in a fair and accurate manner."

ITN chief executive Mark Wood said ITN acknowledged the MoD had continuing concerns about the tone of the series of ITV News reports on wounded soldiers. At the MoD's request, ITN said it would review the way the reports are presented.

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